29 January 2007

Lady of leisure II

I can’t deny that I’m enjoying this time off work, now close to two months along. Unemployment, as long as the bills still get paid, the electricity stays on and there’s food in the pantry, has its appeals.

Still, I can’t continue playing house forever, even if it’s nice not to face deadlines, not to get into the car and commute day in and day out, not have to work with people I dislike. I’m not in the least bit bored, but I must find a good way to generate an income again soon.

“So, get a move on, Wren!” you say. Mmm. Yes. I should. I’ve sent out a few resumes already – without result -- but I should be spending these long, sunny, spring-like winter days working hard to find job openings that look promising. I should be shooting my resume out in all directions, by e-mail, by snail-mail. I should be ...

Yet I find myself becalmed, like a small sailboat in the middle of a glassy lake, surrounded by beautiful mountains, a sky like azure overhead. It’s both frustrating and mesmerizing.

Here are the voices in my head: “It’s been a long time since you’ve had to search for a job. Last time you did this, you were a lot younger (slimmer, bouncier).”

“But you have much more experience now! That counts!”

“Yes, but jobs in journalism and communications are scarce in this neck of the woods.”

“So, search for something down in the city!”

“Yeah, and face an hour or more’s commute both ways, every day. Gas will cost a fortune and I’ll be stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic, breathing exhaust fumes ... yech.”

And then I decide it’s time to clean up that rank of bookshelves in my den that’ve been gathering dust for two years. Or I go outside, sweep the patio and walkways. They look nice. I rearrange the garden art and listen to the Stellar’s jays, screeeing back and forth to each other in the cedars. I chuckle and cluck back at the chickens as I give them their scratch. Breathe the cool, fresh, smog-free air. Admire the yuletide camellias that are, incredibly, into their third month of bloom. Wonder if winter is going to arrive this year or not.

Maybe what I need to do is consider a complete change of careers. Instead of looking for those journalism/communications jobs down in the city, I should consider something I can do here, right here. There’s a mill in town – maybe they’ll hire me. There should be something I can do there. There are grocery stores within 10 miles. I’m sure I can run one of those newfangled cash registers. There’s ... hmm. Not much. What does an editor do if there’s nothing to edit?

Kitchen needs painted. I have the paint, I have the time.

It’s quiet. It’s peaceful. I want to fluff my feathers out, hunker down and rest. I’ve worked full time for more than 36 years. Maybe that’s why my get up and go got up and went.

3 comments:

Dragon Laugh said...

Three words: Leprechaun Walking Sticks.

I'll help gather the twigs... ;)

Kathy Podgers said...

What a nice piece of writing. I especially like the connection you made between the photo and your expierience of being becalmed. I used to tend my garden, now I am content to photo the gardens of my neighbors.

Found your blog from a ling on Planite of the Blind

Connie said...

Oh can I relate to this! I gave up my "career" six years ago to be home with two teenagers as they made the adjustment from moving from NY to OH. Long story. But I'm facing the "empty nest" and trying to figure out what I'd really like (which involves travel) to do vs. how that impacts reality here at home.

Anyway, I had a dream the other night. I was an "Apprentice" and Donald Trump handed each of us a piece of 11" x 14" piece of paper and told us to "build" something. We had 20 minutes and we were told not to leave our chairs. We were given no implements of any kind.

Fast forward > I have no recall as to what it is I might have done with this piece of paper but when it came to my evaluation I was immediately dismissed. "Not creative enough" Donald said. "You're fired!"